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Ford River

A History of Ford River

Ford River

Ford River

Ford River, located just 5 miles south of Escanaba, is one of the most beautiful locations in Delta County. Its small town charm, beautiful beaches and its namesake river offer something for everyone to enjoy the great outdoors, year round.


Originally founded in 1844, the village of Ford River pre-dates Escanaba, originally built as sawmill company town with the river itself used as a natural tool to harvest the lumber that built many of the big cities along the Lake Michigan shoreline. One log at a time, workers navigated the Ford River while standing on logs, delivering the lumber downstream. Its 19th century boarding houses were filled with the original “lumberjacks” of the Upper Peninsula, often immigrants from far away places. Those mill employees were Ford Rivers earliest residents.Ford River Township

Canoe’s and Kayaks

Floating down The Ford River in kayak or a canoe brings you into the heart of nature, filled with eagles in flight and whitetail deer standing in the gentle flow of the river. With easy launch access available at the US2-41 overpass, its one of the best kayak adventures in Delta County. The Ford River runs unobstructed for (insert number of miles), thru the gentle rapids and beautiful scenery of the southern Delta County countryside. The current gently pulls you to the mouth of the river and Lake Michigan itself.

Sandy Shores in Delta County - Ford River

The Ford River Boat Launch sits right in the heart of old Ford River. Providing easy access to the river, its the perfect place to spend an afternoon paddling along the shores of Little Bay de Noc, exploring Ford Rivers origins as a lumber mill, located in the remains of one of the original saw mills. These stacks of rock in the water are one of the best photo locations along the lakeshore, with Door County, Wisconsin visible on the horizon on a clear day.

The Gold Coast: Malibu Of Delta County

Ford River (as we know it today) can be linked to the invention of the automobile. Its beautiful sand beaches were just a short drive from nearby Escanaba, with many of its well-to-do residents buying the land and building the first summertime beach cabins. With time, the first beach cottage hotels came to life, offering summertime travelers a great yearly vacation tradition that continues.

For generations, Sandy Shores has been the site of family vacations, with yearly reservations often being passed down thru generations, each new era carrying forward the timeless traditions in Delta County, re-creating the traditions of their youth for their own children.

“A little slice of heaven” is a common phrase spoken by the residents and visitors alike, who are charmed by the magical beauty of the summertime.

Ford River Boat Launch

Fall Colors: Bike Rides and Day Drives in Delta County

The late summertime hints at autumn are one of the most scenic of all, fall color drives in September and October on the county roads along the river shining in the different colors from its many trees, one of the most scenic drives in Delta County.

Year Round Adventures

The wintertime freezes both The Ford River and Lake Michigan, offering the many ice fishing adventures to life, with its unique location at the mouth of the river. The Ford River boat launch offers easy access for your ORV’s and snowmobiles, a great staring point for your wintertime adventure onto the ice of Lake Michigan.

Ford River Food And Drink

Breezy Point Pizza

-Breezy Point Bar & Grill

One of Delta County’s best bars sits at Breezy Point. Sitting at the point where Little Bay de Noc ends and Green Bay begins, Breezy Point Bar & Grill offers classic bar food with beautiful views, with both indoor and outdoor seating on its beautiful deck on the Lake Michigan shore. Serving classic burgers, and traditional style Wood Fired Pizza.

-The Ford River Pub

Ford River Pub

A long time landmark near the Ford River Boat Launch. With both indoor and outdoor seating, The Ford River Pub serves a wide menu of comfort food classics. “The Pub’s "Friday Night Fish Fry" is a year round tradition, with freshly caught Whitefish and Walleye offering a true taste of an Upper Peninsulas culinary classic.

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